Now I Know Why She Calls Me FatHead…

Via my friend, Dan, who shares stuff with me daily, a report that old brains are indeed capable of growing new cells.

The music to my ears…..

Researchers, however, are more optimistic than ever about the potential of the aging brain, because recent evidence has challenged long-held beliefs by demonstrating that the brain can grow new nerve cells.

“For a long time, we held the assumption that we’re born with all the nerve cells we’re ever going to have, and that the brain is not capable of generating new ones — that once these cells die we’re unable to replace them,” said Molly V. Wagster, chief of the Neuropsychology of Aging branch of the National Institute on Aging. “Those assumptions have been challenged and put by the wayside.”

The birth of new nerve cells, she said, “has been shown to occur in the adult — not only in adult rats and monkeys, but also in older adult humans.” Most of the areas that show neurogenesis and that have been investigated so far are important for learning and memory, particularly the hippocampus, she added.

So how does one stimulate neurogenesis?

Scientists do not have all the answers, but studies of older people who have maintained their mental acuity provide some clues. They tend to be socially connected, with strong ties to relatives, friends and community. They are often both physically healthy and physically active. And they tend to be engaged in stimulating or intellectually challenging activities.

Maybe these headaches I’ve had since the start of the academic journey are the result of my skull expanding to fit all these new brain cells in my already big, fat head……..

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1 Response to “Now I Know Why She Calls Me FatHead…”


  1. 1 Becky May 20, 2008 at 11:32 am

    hmmm…headaches from expanding head, eh? I’d say it’s possible, I mean I would assume that programming involve a whole LOT of new nerves 🙂


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“Life’s hard, son. It’s harder when you’re stupid.” — The Duke.

Education is a companion which no misfortune can depress, no crime can destroy, no enemy can alienate,no despotism can enslave. At home, a friend, abroad, an introduction, in solitude a solace and in society an ornament.It chastens vice, it guides virtue, it gives at once grace and government to genius. Without it, what is man? A splendid slave, a reasoning savage. - Joseph Addison
The term informavore (also spelled informivore) characterizes an organism that consumes information. It is meant to be a description of human behavior in modern information society, in comparison to omnivore, as a description of humans consuming food. George A. Miller [1] coined the term in 1983 as an analogy to how organisms survive by consuming negative entropy (as suggested by Erwin Schrödinger [2]). Miller states, "Just as the body survives by ingesting negative entropy, so the mind survives by ingesting information. In a very general sense, all higher organisms are informavores." - Wikipedia

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